The US Justice Department is reportedly investigating Google for antitrust violations

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Google logo (Image credit: Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Antitrust investigation by the Justice Department will focus on search platform.
  • Google has faced multiple fines from EU in recent years for similar actions.
  • A previous investigation in 2013 led to voluntary changes from Google.

Alphabet Inc.'s Google subsidiary is reportedly the target of an antitrust investigation by the US Justice Department, according to the Wall Street Journal. The full report is behind a paywall, but the summary notes that Google will be scrutinized for its dominating search platform and other businesses.

Google has been under a bit of pressure in this area, particularly in the EU. The EU has leveraged several fines against Alphabet Inc., including a whopping 4.34 billion euros (4.86 billion dollars) penalty for blocking rival software on its dominant Android platform. The EU is also investigating Alphabet Inc. for practices pertaining to local search results and Google Adsense, both of which maintain dominant positions in their respective markets. The EU is reportedly also investigating Google's mapping technologies, among other things, potentially preparing further antitrust cases against the search giant.

In the late 90s, Microsoft was famously slapped by the US Department of Justice and the EU for its own antitrust violations, which led to the "Choose your browser" pop-up in older operating systems, alongside a range of other rules Microsoft had to follow.

If the US Department of Justice finds that Google has been unfairly leveraging its dominant positions in search and other businesses to stifle competition, it could lead to severe consequences for the tech giant.

Jez Corden
  • Break
  • Break up Apple. Apple monopolises its app store. No competition. Apple needs to go.
  • Duck Trump. All because he thinks Google is being mean to him. Twatwaffle that he is.
  • Yeah. Just like the investigation he had the FTC conduct back in 2013. Thank goodness Democrats like Elizabeth Warren and Nancy Pelosi haven't advocated breaking up tech giants, or anything.
  • Shh, its trumps doing did you not get the memo.....
  • In this particular case, I have no doubt it played a major role.
  • Things will get better someday. Nah we'll probably elect Oprah next time. The good news is that she couldn't possibly be any worse.
  • Tim Apple will be delighted.
  • I've never liked the fact that Google is allowed to function as a smartphone OEM.
  • Break up googles phone divisions so then you can install the play store on any random cheap Chinese phone making Google even more powerful
  • They should just pull out of the US! Let's see how they get on without them! Lol
  • To go after Google and not the Internet providers is a waste of money. They share and sell all your data. Then charge you for it as well ..
  • About time, they have been abusing their market position with regards to search for years.